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Dive Review of Bikini Atoll Divers in
Micronesia/Marshall Islands

Bikini Atoll Divers, Apr, 2006,

by Ronald Varley, HI, USA . Report 2606.

No photos available at this time

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 3 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 1 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments Trip originally planned for 8 days in Kwajalien aboard Oleanda followed by 7 days at Bikini. Ten days before departure received email from Rongelap Expeditions saying Kwajalien operations being suspended for rest of 2006. They offered full refund or credit for future booking. After a few emails decided to take the refund. Now had to work filling time scheduled for Kwajalein or make a complete change to air travel. Considered diving a week with Bako Divers in Majuro run by Jerry Ross, which I had done in 2002. Thought about another week at Bikini, contacted Lani Kramer at Bikini Atoll Divers for availability week prior to scheduled reservation. Had immediate reply “Absolutely”. Lani did great job re-coordinating tickets with Air Marshall Island Air and booking me a room for one night in Majuro. I then only had to change the itinerary of my ticket. I had booked HNL-KWA, which has a stop in Majuro. Dropping the MAJ-KWA-MAJ legs required no change of dates for departure and return to HNL.

Lani met me on arrival in Majuro and took me to the hotel she had booked for me, Marshall Islands Resort. The hotel used to be managed by Outrigger and was very comfortable. Next morning hotel bus took me to Airport where I met up with Lani and other divers going to Bikini. Since I had a short notice change in my booking with Bikini Atoll Divers there was not enough time to wire funds for the extra week, they accepted a personal check from me for the extra week.

Flight to Bikini was on Dash 8 operated my Air Marshall Island. Had stop in Kwajalien on the way. This is where I would have boarded following 8 days of diving aboard Oleanda so you see these two locations would make a very good package and I hope Rongelap Expeditions is able to get this operation at Kwajalien going again. Arrived in Bikini just before lunch and were met by departing divers, who had been there two weeks and staff. Bags and gear were loaded on two skiffs for trip across the Lagoon. You land on Eneu, small island just south east of Bikini Island, only has runway and couple buildings for flight operations. There are about 23 small islands that outline the lagoon. Flight from Majuro via Kwajalein and trip across the lagoon was beautiful. On arrival, our gear was transferred to quarters and we gathered for lunch. After lunch we were asked to put all our dive gear in one bag for pickup and it would be delivered to dive boat while we had a dive briefing.
Our first dive was a checkout dive to about 105 feet to the deck of the Sarratoga. The rest of the week we did two dives everyday, one in morning and one in afternoon, about 4 hours apart. Every dive is a planned decompression dive using surface supplied mix of 74% Oxygen at a fixed deco bar suspended to 30 feet with 10 foot increments. The dive schedule the rest of the week was as follows with my max depth and time in the water.

Day/Dive Dive Site Depth Time
2/1 Lamson 142 0:50
2/2 Saratoga-Hangar 132 1:01
3/1 Arkansas 176 1:01
3/2 Nagato-Stern 166 0:57
4/1 Carlisle 173 1:00
4/2 Saratoga-Bow 168 0:59
5/1 Nagato-Bow 171 0:58
5/2 Saratoga-Penetration 143 0:55
6/1 Anderson 172 0:51
6/2 Apogon 163 0:52
7/1 Saratoga-Stern 168 0:57

The second week I was there I was the only customer and received absolutely outstanding service! Jim was completely flexible with my desires and offered me the opportunity to do some penetration dives on the Saratoga. This was a real treat for me as I am not a Technical Diver only a recreational diver with about 170 dives at the time with some previous wreck experience on two previous trips to Truk Lagoon.

The one thing that really hit home to me was that this place is setup for experienced recreational divers. That is those who have at least 50 dives with a few between 100-130 feet and have good buoyancy control. If you are an experienced recreational diver and like wrecks you will love this place. Just come use the configuration you are used to using be it singles or doubles. But you really need a computer, preferably two, capable of monitoring at least two different gas mixtures on a single dive. They have Dive-Rite HE’s available for rent and they are easy to use. I brought a Dive-Rite Nitek 3 and Uwatec Smart Tec. Tank used was single HP Steel 119CuFt., with 3500-3600 PSI. If you would rather have doubles then get the training and experience before going. By experience I mean going out and diving 15-20 dives after training so you are totally comfortable with the set-up.
Food and accommodations are good, especially for a place so remote. Good solid bed, adequate space, air-conditioned, and decent bathroom with plenty of hot water. Outside at end of each building is rinse tank and place to hang gear for drying. There is no rinse tank on the skiff for camera so just carried back and forth and rinsed off in room. Mini home theater with some DVD movies but recommend you bring some of your new stuff. Besides diving, eating and sleeping not much to do. Snorkeling not recommended early morning or evening, due to abundance of sharks at that time. You can walk around the island and one afternoon we went to another island where a large concrete bunker was built for the A-Bomb tests.

This was definitely the best dive trip I have ever had. My Mahalo to everyone at Bikini Atoll Divers. Highly recommend! When you go be sure and take some goodies for the staff. They like getting current newspapers and magazines, latest movies on DVD and Dark Chocolate. I will to go back in a year or two. Highly Recommend!

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving All Hawaiian Islands, Marshall Islands, Wakatobi Indonesia, Truk Lagoon and Palau
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, dry Seas calm, choppy, noCurrents
Water Temp 80-86°F / 27-30°C Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 40-100 Ft/ 12-30 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile no
Enforced diving restrictions Everyone had to follow a set minimum ascent protocol.Standard was 2 minute stop at 80 feet, 2 minutes at 40 feet, 2 minutes at 30 feet, 5 minutes at 20 feet and 10 minutes at 10 feet then a slow ascent to the surface.If you needed longer ok.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks 1 or 2 Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 3 stars Large Fish 3 stars
Large Pelagics 3 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars Shore Facilities 3 stars
UW Photo Comments No rinse tank on skiff. Just carried camera to from quarters for each dive and rinsed in room.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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